She felt an immediate connection.
South Shore hoops standout Tsahai Corbie, who met the coaching staff at Coppin State University a few weeks ago, said she knew right after that first conversation she had found the program for her.
Corbie verbally committed to Coppin State late in January, cementing her on-court future and, more importantly, buying into a program that she hopes will help shape her off the court as well.
“They were the first school to actually reach out to me and I really took that into consideration because they saw me for the player I am, faults and strengths,” Corbie said. “They didn’t just see me and I had a 20-point game and it was, like, oh, let’s just get this girl.”
Corbie met with Coppin State’s coaches — including head coach DeWayne Burroughs — and found that they weren’t simply interested in her as a player. They were interested in her as a person as well and that, ultimately, made her college decision as easy as possible.
“I felt like that made the difference,” Corbie said. “They were really open and honest with me and they were kind of humorous too and I like that in a coaching staff. I really developed a relationship with them.”
Corbie visited Coppin State’s campus just before verbally committing and, much like her early conversations with the coaching staff, knew immediately — she’d found the perfect school.
The Baltimore campus isn’t enormous, but it’s not too small either and the school is close enough that Corbie’s family can come see her play next season.
“It’s exactly what I was looking for,” Corbie said. “When I stepped on, I immediately knew I could see myself here. It was just the perfect match for me.”
Corbie’s hit her on-court stride over the last few games with the Lady Vikings, including a nine-point performance against Baldwin on Jan. 29, and she’s determined to improve once she reaches the college level.
Coppin State competes in the Mid-Eastern Atlantic Conference, but the Eagles boasted a jam-packed non-conference schedule with top-tier competition this season. In fact, Corbie sighted Coppin State’s challenging schedule as a major factor in her commitment decision.
“I don’t want to go somewhere we’re going to be just beating teams up,” she said. “I want to go somewhere where it’s going to be games that we lose, but they’re going to be close and tops. I want to play against top players in the country.”
Corbie is thrilled with the chance to play basketball at the next level — the third South Shore player to commit to a Division I program this season — but she’s also doing her best to stay in the moment as well.
After all, she and the Lady Vikings have their sights set on another championship and before she packs her bags for Baltimore, Corbie wants to lift that city title trophy one more time.
“I’m glad that I’ve got the chance at this opportunity,” she said. “But I also really, really want to win states. So I’m doing my best to stay focused on that.”